This week I determined my All-Star teams through May for both the AL and the NL. The AL stats are as of May 22nd and the NL stats are as of May 23rd.
AL All-Star Team:
1B: Miguel Cabrera, DET (.381 AVG, 8 HR, 32 RBI): Cabrera is tied for the 4th most RBI’s among all AL first basemen on the ballot. And he has the highest batting average of AL first basemen on the ballot with at least 100 at-bats. The only stat that isn’t in the top five is home runs, where he is tied for 7th. Also, he is one of only three 1st basemen with at least one stolen base this year. Justin Morneau is really his only competition.
2B: Aaron Hill, TOR (.351 AVG, 11 HR, 35 RBI): Aaron Hill has been by far the most dominant second baseman this year in batting average, hitting .351, with the second highest one on the ballot being .327, 24 points lower than Hill’s. And he hasn’t stopped at average; he has shown good power, too, tied for the AL 2nd base lead in home runs with Ian Kinsler with 11, and leading all AL second basemen in RBI’s with 35.
SS: Jason Bartlett, TB (.376 AVG, 6 HR, 23 RBI): Bartlett leads all AL shortstops on the ballot in batting average by 65 points. And he leads them in home runs. And in RBI’s. And in stolen bases with 12. That’s pretty good, and a pretty good sign that he deserves to start at short. When you lead in the all three triple crown categories at your position, you deserve to start.
3B: Evan Longoria, TB (.329 AVG, 11 HR, 46 RBI): Longoria leads all of baseball in RBI’s, and isn’t too shabby at either batting average or home runs, as he is doing well in both those categories. When you lead the major leagues in RBI’s you should be an All-Star starter unless you’re hitting under .200, but when you have an average over .300 and lead the majors in RBI’s, you’re an automatic starter, in my opinion.
C: Victor Martinez, CLE (.400 AVG, 7 HR, 30 RBI): Victor is having a great comeback year, hitting .400, with 7 HR’s (tied for second most among AL catchers) and 30 RBI’s (most among AL catchers). It’s hard to argue with those numbers. When you hit .400 and have the power, it makes you an All-Star starter. Easily.
OF: Jason Bay, BOS (.295 AVG, 13 HR, 44 RBI): Jason is 2nd among all major league hitters in RBI’s, behind only Evan Longoria of the Rays. He is also 2nd among all hitters in the American League in home runs, behind only Carlos Pena in that category. And his batting average isn’t letting him down, as he is hitting .301 so far this year and that stat pretty much solidifies his spot in the starting line-up for the All-Star game.
OF: Adam Jones, BAL (.372 AVG, 9 HR, 30 RBI): Even though Adam doesn’t lead AL outfielders in RBI’s or home runs, he does lead them in batting average and is tied for 5th in AL outfielders in home runs and is 5th in RBI’s.
OF: Nick Markakis, BAL (.315 AVG, 7 HR, 35 RBI): Nick is second among all the AL outfielders on the All-Star ballot in RBI’s, and he isn’t letting down in the two other major categories, as he is batting over .300 so far this season, and has a decent amount of home runs. In my opinion, he should be a pretty obvious choice for a starter as of right now.
SP: Zack Grienke, KC (7-1, 0.82 ERA, 73 K): Zack Grienke has dominated so far this year. He is second in the major leagues in wins (behind Roy Halladay), he leads the major leagues in ERA, and his 0.82 ERA is the highest it’s been all year by far, and he is second in the American League in strikeouts (tied for third overall). I don’t see how anybody could argue with him.
1B: Justin Morneau, MIN (.327 AVG, 12 HR, 33 RBI)
Russell Branyan, SEA (.308 AVG, 10 HR, 20 RBI)
2B: Ian Kinsler, TEX (.295 AVG, 11 HR, 32 RBI)
SS: Marco Scutaro, TOR (.280 AVG, 5 HR, 20 RBI)
3B: Brandon Inge, DET (.280 AVG, 11 HR, 29 RBI)
Michael Young, TEX (.335 AVG, 7 HR, 17 RBI)
C: Joe Mauer, MIN (.417 AVG, 8 HR, 24 RBI)
Rod Barajas, TOR (.309 AVG, 3 HR, 23 RBI)
OF: Michael Cuddyer, MIN (.291 AVG, 7 HR, 30 RBI)
Torii Hunter, LAA (.305 AVG, 9 HR, 31 RBI)
Carl Crawford, TB (.322 AVG, 1 HR, 20 RBI, 25 SB)
Matt Holliday, OAK (.270 AVG, 6 HR, 27 RBI)
P: Roy Halladay, TOR (8-1, 2.78 ERA, 57 K)
Mark Buehrle, CWS (6-1, 2.77 ERA, 33 K)
Kevin Millwood, TEX (4-4, 3.12 ERA, 35 K)
Edwin Jackson, DET (4-2, 2.55 ERA, 48 K)
Joe Saunders, LAA (6-2, 3.17 ERA, 29 K)
Jonathon Papelbon, BOS (0.95 ERA, 11 SV, 21 K)
Brian Fuentes, LAA (4.30 ERA, 11 SV, 19 K)
Frank Francisco, TEX (0.00 ERA, 9 SV, 13 K)
Bobby Jenks, CWS (2.57 ERA, 9 SV, 13 K)
Mariano Rivera, NYY (2.89 ERA, 9 SV, 23 K)
Francisco Rodney, DET (3.50 ERA, 8 SV, 13 K)
Players per Team:
Texas Rangers – 4
Detroit Tigers – 4
Toronto Blue Jays – 4
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim – 3
Minnesota Twins – 3
Tampa Bay Rays – 3
Baltimore Orioles – 2
Boston Red Sox – 2
Chicago White Sox – 2
Cleveland Indians – 1
Kansas City Royals – 1
New York Yankees – 1
Oakland Athletics – 1
Seattle Mariners – 1
NL All-Star Team:
1B: Albert Pujols, STL (.329 AVG, 14 HR, 38 RBI): Even though Pujols is only 4th in NL first basemen in batting average, and doesn’t lead them in either homers or RBI’s (Adrian Gonzalez has 16 home runs and Prince Fielder has 39 RBI’s), the people ahead of him in each of those three categories don’t have the consistency throughout all their stats like Pujols does.
2B: Chase Utley, PHI (.293 AVG, 11 HR, 31 RBI): Even though Utley is only tied for 4th in batting average among NL second basemen on the ballot, he leads them in home runs and is 2nd in RBI’s behind only Brandon Phillips of the Reds. In my opinion, when you have a solid batting average and the best power numbers at your position in your league, you deserve to start in the All-Star game.
SS: Hanley Ramirez, FLA (.325 AVG, 8 HR, 22 RBI): Even though Ramirez is leading in only one of the three major hitting categories among shortstops, nobody else is better than that. He is tied for second in batting average, 1st in home runs, and 3rd in RBI’s although only two RBI’s away from the NL shortstop leader, Miguel Tejada, in that category.
3B: Ryan Zimmerman, WAS (.348 AVG, 11 HR, 34 RBI): Amazingly, Ryan’s .348 batting average is only second among NL third basemen on the ballot with at least 100 at-bats for the season. He is also second in home runs and first in RBI’s. And it’s pretty hard not to make the All-Star team when you’ve had as long a hitting streak as Ryan Zimmerman has.
C: Bengie Molina, SF (.276 AVG, 8 HR, 30 RBI): Out of all the catchers on the NL All-Star ballot, Molina is tied for 1st in batting average with his brother, Yadier Molina, at .276. Not to mention the fact that he leads all NL catchers on the ballot in both home runs and RBI’s. That’s All-Star starter worthy.
OF: Raul Ibanez, PHI (.353 AVG, 16 HR, 41 RBI): Ibanez is tied for the major league lead in home runs with 16, and he leads all NL outfielders in RBI’s with 41. That doesn’t even say the fact that he is hitting over .350, more than 50 points higher than the century mark.
OF: Carlos Beltran, NYM (.367 AVG, 6 HR, 29 RBI): Carlos is leading all NL outfielders in batting average, and that’s dropped 48 points since the last time I did this. He’s also got pretty decent power numbers, with almost 30 RBI’s.
OF: Brad Hawpe, COL (.336 AVG, 6 HR, 34 RBI): Brad has dominated the National League pitching so far this year, as he is 4th among National League outfielders on the ballot with at least 100 at-bats in batting average at .336. He also is second in RBI’s in that category.
SP: Johan Santana, NYM (6-2, 1.50 ERA, 75 K): Johan Santana leads the National League pitchers in ERA with just a 1.50 ERA, and he leads them in wins alongside Bronson Arroyo of Cincinnati and Chad Billingsley of Los Angeles with 6 of them. That doesn’t even mention that he is 3rd in the NL in strikeouts with 75. When you’re in the top three in each of the three major pitching categories, you deserve to be the starting pitcher for your league.
1B: Adrian Gonzalez, SD (.280 AVG, 16 HR, 30 RBI)
Joey Votto, CIN (.366 AVG, 5 HR, 27 RBI)
2B: Orlando Hudson, LAD (.343 AVG, 3 HR, 27 RBI)
Brandon Phillips, CIN (.269 AVG, 7 HR, 34 RBI)
SS: Miguel Tejada, HOU (.325 AVG, 4 HR, 24 RBI)
3B: David Wright, NYM (.362 AVG, 3 HR, 29 RBI)
C: Pudge Rodriguez, HOU (.270 AVG, 5 HR, 19 RBI)
OF: Ryan Braun, MIL (.331 AVG, 8 HR, 31 RBI)
Carlos Lee, HOU (.327 AVG, 8 HR, 29 RBI)
Justin Upton, ARI (.304 AVG, 9 HR, 26 RBI)
Nate McLouth, PIT (.277 AVG, 7 HR, 29 RBI)
P: Jair Jurrjens, ATL (4-2, 1.96 ERA, 32 K)
Wandy Rodriguez, HOU (5-2, 1.83 ERA, 53 K)
Johnny Cueto, CIN (4-2, 2.35 ERA, 40 K)
Chad Billingsley, LAD (6-1, 2.51 ERA, 63 K)
Ted Lilly, CHC (5-3, 3.35 ERA, 43 K)
Heath Bell, SD (0.49 ERA, 12 SV, 23 K)
Francisco Rodriguez, NYM (0.87 ERA, 12 SV, 20 K)
Jonathon Broxton, LAD (1.29 ERA, 11 SV, 32 K)
Francisco Cordero, CIN (2.00 ERA, 11 SV, 20 K)
Ryan Franklin, STL (1.53 ERA, 11 SV, 15 K)
Chad Qualls, ARI (2.50 ERA, 10 SV, 22 K)
Players per Team:
Cincinnati Reds – 4
Houston Astros – 4
New York Mets – 4
Los Angeles Dodgers – 3
Arizona Diamondbacks – 2
Philadelphia Phillies – 2
San Diego Padres – 2
St. Louis Cardinals – 2
Atlanta Braves – 1
Chicago Cubs – 1
Colorado Rockies – 1
Florida Marlins – 1
Milwaukee Brewers – 1
Pittsburgh Pirates – 1
San Francisco Giants – 1
Washington Nationals – 1
Results of last week’s poll:
Which AL 1st place team do you think has had the best year so far?
Texas – 72%
Toronto – 28%
Detroit – 0%
Come back next week for my May Awards.